Apple iPhone
Vodafone is due to become the third UK operator to offer the Apple iPhone, following yesterday's deal between Apple and Orange

Vodafone is this morning expected to confirm it has signed a contract with Apple to sell the iPhone in the UK and Ireland from 2010. This follows yesterday's deal between Apple and Orange, finally breaking O2's stranglehold on the hugely popular iPhone.

Without securing the rights to the iPhone, Vodafone faced the prospect of losing hundreds of thousands of its customers to rivals O2 and Orange.

Vittorio Colao, Vodafone's chief executive, has said that not having the iPhone was a key reason why the operator lost 159,000 customers in its latest quarter.

It's hoped that opening up the device to a third mobile operator will lead to a price cut on the iPhone.